North and South

Jazz vocalist Luciana Souza's North and South is, as its name indicates, a marriage of Northern (jazz and the American songbook) and Southern (the artist's Brazilian roots) influences.

Jazz vocalist Luciana Souza's North and South is, as its name indicates, a marriage of Northern (jazz and the American songbook) and Southern (the artist's Brazilian roots) influences. It's also the third album in a trilogy that first explored American poetry set to Souza's music and then covered Brazilian classics as duets. North and South mixes a bit of both by including Brazilian classics as well as Souza's own material, performed in piano trio format (featuring pianists Bruce Barth, Fred Hersch, and Edward Simon) with tenor sax. It's a succinct, elegant disc with memorable tracks, notably Souza's rendition of "Chega de Saudade" and her own "No Wonder," an impressive showcase for Souza's vocal agility and emotional range. Less compelling is the rather stagnant "I Shall Wait" and an unremarkable reading of Jobim's "Corcovado."—LC